Sunday, February 21, 2010

British Court Upholds Discriminatory Labor Practice of British Airways

It continues to amaze me ... and alarm me ... that today's so called "tolerant" and "politically correct" society fails to see its blatant hypocrisy in its discrimination against Christians.  Take the case of British Airways employee Nadia Eweida, who was forbidden to wear her cross while working behind the check-in counter

Here's the story by Aaron J. Leichman of The Christian Post (emphasis added):

British Airways Worker Loses Religious Discrimination Case

A British Airways check-in worker who refused to hide her cross necklace at work has lost her case against the airline in London's Court of Appeals but will likely take it up to the Supreme Court.

Sat, Feb. 13, 2010 Posted: 10:52 AM EDT

A British Airways check-in worker who refused to hide her cross necklace at work has lost her case against the airline in London's Court of Appeals but will likely take it up to the Supreme Court.

The Appeals Court on Friday upheld the November 2008 judgment of an employment tribunal, which found that banning Nadia Eweida from wearing a cross was not discriminatory because Christians “generally” do not consider wearing a cross as a requirement of their religion.

Furthermore, the court's judge ruled, however much British Airways’ ban conflicted with individuals' religious beliefs, the airline was justified in imposing it.

The case reflects "problems which can arise when an individual asserts that a ... practice adopted by an employer conflicts with beliefs which they hold, but which may not only not be shared but may be opposed by others in the workforce,” the judge stated, according to Agence-France Presse.

"It is not unthinkable that a blanket ban may sometimes be the only fair solution," he added.

Although British Airways has since changed its uniform policy to allow for the open wearing of all religious symbols, including crosses, Eweida took the airline to the Employment Appeal Tribunal, claiming the airline had discriminated against Christians by not allowing them to openly wear symbols of their faith while Muslim and Hindu employees were permitted to wear headscarves and turbans.

Eweida wanted British Airways to acknowledge the old policy amounted to religious discrimination, and was seeking 120,000 pounds (nearly $200,000) in damages and lost wages for the roughly three months she was kept off the job.

Following Friday’s ruling, Dr. Vincent Cable, Eweida’s Member of Parliament and the Liberal Democrat Shadow Chancellor, vowed to “fight on” and take “this important issue of principle and freedom of expression” to the Supreme Court.

Corinna Ferguson, legal officer for the London-based human rights group Liberty, added: “This is a disappointing judgment that will do little to build public confidence in equality laws protecting everyone.

“But this is just the sort of case that a Supreme Court is for and we have every hope that the highest court in the land will put Britain's long tradition of religious tolerance into modern legal practice,” said Ferguson, who represented Eweida.

According to Liberty, Eweida currently has support from religious leaders, politicians of all parties and the Transport and General Workers Union.

Notably, it was only after a public backlash and widespread criticism from politicians and church leaders, including the Archbishop of Canterbury, that British Airways changed its uniform policy to allow crosses on chains to be worn openly.
You will note that British Airways has changed its uniform policy to permit the wearing of religious symbols.  Perhaps it is a matter of principal that Eweida continues with her law suit.

Interesting that British Airways made the excuse that Christians are not dictated by their religion to wear crosses.  They fail to see that neither does Islam require the wearing of head coverings for women.  So, BA allows head coverings but not crosses.  Hmmmm ...

Again, we're slapped upside the head with this ridiculous, mindless political correctness nonsense.  Such PC-minded (or "blinded") individuals resort to all kinds of contortions to accommodate those of other races and religions, failing or refusing to see when they discriminate against another group. 

It reminds me of a colleague at work who complained on several occasions of Christian students observing the annual "See You at the Flag Pole", which is an event of prayer that takes place before the school day starts -- totally protected by the Constitution and U.S. Supreme Court decisions, because such an event does not take place during the school day and does not use taxpayer monies.   The colleague complained about this on several occasions, so one time I asked her how she felt about some schools being faced with the dilemma of whether to offer classrooms with prayer rugs to their Muslim students during Ramadan during the school day -- a clear violation of separation of church and state.  She had no problem with that.  In her PC-induced blindness, she could not see her own religious bias.

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